Good morning all!
Let’s discuss the kind of Faith we have.
Please take a moment to take this quick quiz before we dive into the different types of Faith some of us have.
We have heard the word being used in conversation; many times from our own lips. We know it’s a good word; one that brings us a sort of comfort. We have heard the word in songs, seen it on clothing and skin. But, do we REALLY have the word defined in our hearts? Is it just a simple symbol we casually wear or is it a soul deep alliance we have between us and someone else? Something else?
Which of these have you heard or have you spoken?
Keep the Faith in and for what? In yourself? In others? What do we mean by keeping the Faith?
Have Faith in what or who? What are we expecting in return by having Faith?
Take a leap of Faith….why? What for? What are we leaping into and away from? And when we do leap, how do we expect Faith to be the rock we land on? The amazing outcome we desire?
We should act in good Faith…why? What’s the purpose? Can’t we just act from being a good person? Why pull Faith into it?
Regardless of the phrase or how the word is used…there is a common denominator with them all….and that common denominator is called Hope. Hope is the underlying and breathing reason behind Faith.
The question is what does Hope do for us in terms of what our Faith is in?
What does Hope do for us when our Faith is in the world?
This question I would imagine would have many different answers depending on who you ask. We live in a HUGE world stuffed with so many different ingredients, making it a massive melting pot of ideas and beliefs.
The challenge we face when believing our Hope comes from the world is being able to fully and whole heartedly depend on others for our source of happiness. Our jobs, spouses, children, money, etc are all outlets we tend to plug into as our primary source of Hope.
We hope we don’t lose our jobs, we hope we stay in happy marriages, we hope our children grow up to be happy and successful, we hope we make more money.
Our endless hunger for Hope goes on and on. This seems like basic human nature to Hope for stuff, and it’s true we all do. And it’s also true we sometimes get what we hope for. However, whatever it is we are hoping for will not last forever. It can’t because we all grow old at some point, we all lose and gain money, not all of us stay in happy and healthy marriages and we don’t all keep the same jobs. Those pursuits of Hope fade, diminish and/or change.
So, what happens when we don’t get what we Hope for? What happens to our desires then? Do we change them based off the trend in society? The latest headline story? Do we just forget about it and move on?
My point is if we have worldly Faith, we cannot rely on Hope as our primary source of happiness. How can we if things constantly change? We cannot rely on Hope solely if it’s dependability is based off chance or circumstance. How can we really trust that?
What hope does for us in a worldly sense is it may or may not bring us temporary happiness, but like all things in the world it’s temporary, so eventually it will perish. What then? What will hope do for us when all else perishes?
What does Hope do for us when we have no Faith?
We may have heard some people say they don’t have Faith in anyone or anything. What does that imply exactly? What are their worlds like living each day without any Hope?
Some may argue that choosing to live a faithless live simply implies they depend and trust themselves only. They are the only ones who won’t let them down. But, this is a hard standard to live by as well because we all sin and fall short to the glory of God. And that means at some point we will fall short to ourselves too. We won’t always meet our own expectations, so what then? Do we justify it and move on? Deny it? Pretend we are unaffected by those times?
Some may say they don’t have Faith in themselves. They may admit that they fall short, but have no concrete solution to their errors. Admitting it is one thing, but caring enough to rectify it is another. What then?
If we choose to not have any Faith, basically we are agreeing to live an imprisoned life, always chained to our errors and brokeness.
In a broken world being a broken person, who falls down repeatedly, Hope seems to be a life vessel for freedom and peace no? Otherwise, we continue to choose to mask our heart holes with excuses and justifications, with no real way to fill our holes.
Having no Faith is like placing our hearts in quicksand, slowly and steadily sinking into a pit of hopelessness and emptiness, and believing it to be truth and happiness.
What does Hope do for us when we have Lukewarm Faith?
Having one foot in and one foot out is like being stuck in soul limbo. We don’t know whether we are coming or going since this type of Faith is based on circumstance for the most part.
We may not give Faith much thought other than a quick acknowledgement that sometimes it’s there.
Those who inhabit Lukewarm Faith typically tend to attend church occasionally or cherry pick parts of their Faith that seems to fit their lives accordingly.
If Hope resided in this type of Faith, then there would be no need to live lukewarm lives. Real hope isn’t something that comes and goes. It doesn’t exist half in us and half outside of us. We may have bad days or seasons that obscure our Hope at times, but that’s not due to Hope not existing, that’s due to our emotions reacting.
Did you know God condems lukewarm Faith? He said in Revelation 3:15-16 “‘I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot!.”
What He is stating to us is for us to choose one or the other. We need to either choose to be on fire in our Faith or to have none. The in between sends a false message of what Hope really is and is deceiving to our own hearts.
We cannot periodoliically pray, rarely go to church, and at times think of God and expect to exemplify an abundant life of constant flowing Hope.
Instead we can expect to have occasional encounters with shadows of it. But, shadows blend in with darkness, whereas the light from it shines right through it.
What does Hope do for us when we have Godly Faith?
When we take our Faith out of people and the world and place it solely in God, a whole new life emerges for us.
We begin to feel a freedom of release from all the weight we carry. We no longer feel the lingering need to grasp control over everything; to people please all the time and to feel the unwavering desire to fill the holes in our hearts.
Having real Faith in God releases us from that bondage of false Hope and exchanges it for a life of real heart changing Hope.
God’s word never ever changes, no matter how much the world does. He never breaks His promises and His Love endures forever, even after physical death.
We can rely on Him because of what He did for us on the cross. We can depend on Him because we know His Love will never change for us. We can breathe a life of clean air knowing it is because of Him that provides each breath; purified from His undying Love.
Hope comes to life when we have Faith in God. We begin to see the eternal depth of it and how very powerful it is.
It is an igniter for our doubt, a revival for our brokeness and the soil we are searching for to fill those gaping holes in our hearts.
Once we plant our Faith in God there, Hope springs from the branches of our hearts. It guides, drives and instructs us through every season of our lives.
God is Hope. He is our REAL Hope. And once we choose to let that seed flourish, He creates a whole new perception and heart for us, allowing us to grow and thrive from our Faith in Him.